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James Rodney Phillips
Number of games in database: 56
Years covered: 1957 to 1969
Overall record: +14 -17 =25 (47.3%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games.

Repertoire Explorer
Most played openings
B77 Sicilian, Dragon, Yugoslav Attack (2 games)
B92 Sicilian, Najdorf, Opocensky Variation (2 games)
D32 Queen's Gambit Declined, Tarrasch (2 games)
C78 Ruy Lopez (2 games)
B32 Sicilian (2 games)
E61 King's Indian (2 games)
E62 King's Indian, Fianchetto (2 games)
D30 Queen's Gambit Declined (2 games)
B62 Sicilian, Richter-Rauzer (2 games)
A21 English (2 games)

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(born 1942, died Sep-19-1969, 27 years old) New Zealand

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James Rodney Phillips, a pupil of Ortvin Sarapu, was New Zealand Champion in 1957 (jointly), 1958 and 1965. Participating in the 6th World Junior Championship in 1961 held in The Hague he finished 1st in the B Final. Sadly, he drowned in Wellington Harbour in 1969.

 page 1 of 3; games 1-25 of 56  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. A Feneridis vs J R Phillips 1-051195764th NZ ChE61 King's Indian
2. D Lynch vs J R Phillips  1-045195865th NZ ChE61 King's Indian
3. J R Phillips vs C Clemens  0-1301959World U20 ch prel. group 2B92 Sicilian, Najdorf, Opocensky Variation
4. F Kuijpers vs J R Phillips  ½-½171959World U20 ch prel. group 2A33 English, Symmetrical
5. J R Phillips vs H O Halen  ½-½261959World U20 ch prel. group 2B62 Sicilian, Richter-Rauzer
6. A Tomson vs J R Phillips  ½-½241959World U20 ch prel. group 2A00 Uncommon Opening
7. J R Phillips vs R Primavera  0-1341959World U20 ch prel. group 2B07 Pirc
8. D Grimshaw vs J R Phillips  0-1451959World U20 ch prel. group 2A21 English
9. J R Phillips vs C Maalouf  1-0251959World U20 ch prel. group 2C63 Ruy Lopez, Schliemann Defense
10. R Biever vs J R Phillips  0-1471959World U20 ch prel. group 2A57 Benko Gambit
11. A Tomson vs J R Phillips  ½-½451959World U20 ch final AB77 Sicilian, Dragon, Yugoslav Attack
12. Parma vs J R Phillips  1-0781959World U20 ch final AB77 Sicilian, Dragon, Yugoslav Attack
13. J R Phillips vs S Hamann  ½-½261959World U20 ch final AC47 Four Knights
14. R Naranja vs J R Phillips  1-0401959World U20 ch final AE62 King's Indian, Fianchetto
15. J R Phillips vs C Bielicki  0-1451959World U20 ch final AB92 Sicilian, Najdorf, Opocensky Variation
16. F Kuijpers vs J R Phillips  ½-½501959World U20 ch final AB76 Sicilian, Dragon, Yugoslav Attack
17. J R Phillips vs J Stefanov  ½-½441959World U20 ch final AB32 Sicilian
18. D E Rumens vs J R Phillips  ½-½341959World U20 ch final AA02 Bird's Opening
19. J R Phillips vs W Erny  0-1511959World U20 ch final AC85 Ruy Lopez, Exchange Variation Doubly Deferred (DERLD)
20. U Kuettner vs J R Phillips  ½-½311959World U20 ch final AE62 King's Indian, Fianchetto
21. J R Phillips vs C Clemens  1-0441959World U20 ch final AA45 Queen's Pawn Game
22. J R Phillips vs O Sarapu  ½-½29196067th New Zealand ChampionshipA07 King's Indian Attack
23. O Sarapu vs J R Phillips  ½-½271961Waikato Chess League ChD29 Queen's Gambit Accepted, Classical
24. L E Whitehouse vs J R Phillips  0-1281961Waikato ChD20 Queen's Gambit Accepted
25. R Chapman vs J R Phillips  1-0301961North Island ChD85 Grunfeld
 page 1 of 3; games 1-25 of 56  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Phillips wins | Phillips loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  Richard Taylor: Philips committed suicide he was a prodigy who was NZ Champion at the age of about 15. I met him on quite a few occasions and a few times I played in the same tourney. He was a history lecturer at the time. Very intense and nervous.

No question of his huge talents.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Richard Taylor: Sarapu and Phillips were very close. Pity Ortvin not alive to say something about him now. As NZ, with a small population and a badly organized chess association, doesn't have so many strong chess players such as Phillips stand out.
Dec-21-12  Cibator: If I remember right, he performed well at the 1961 World Junior Championship, winning one of the lesser finals.

I can recall reading a very brief report of his premature death in "Chess", but had no idea it was a suicide. How tragic.

Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: Phillip's participation in the 1967 British Championship was because he was a student at Sussex University, researching the effects of the Common Market (EU) on New Zealand.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jonathan Sarfati: Definitely a very talented but tragic figure. Unfortunately he didn't seem to know how to get help.

Many years later, when I was in my teens or 20s, different older players told me that Phillips had visited their families in their homes, and they had dinner and chatted, and next they heard, he had taken his own life. Some of these older players were unaware of the other players with the same experience. The late Edward G A Frost was one of them, and he wasn't aware of C B Oldridge. Mr Frost thought that another strong Wellington player, J E Eriksen, gave up serious competition because he was so upset by the death of his friend (but he was patron of the Wellington club for many years). Sarapu was also very upset by his death.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Richard Taylor: I remember Ted Frost. I am pretty sure I met him, I was quite young. My father talked with him about chess admin etc. I think we were in Wellington for the Congress...
Oct-11-17  Cibator: I once played Ted Frost by post in 1980, until he suddenly stopped replying to my moves. Puzzled by this at first, I later realised it was perfectly excusable. Ted was at that time editor of "The Dominion" (Wellington's morning newspaper) and he'd managed to get seriously offside with Rob Muldoon, NZ's rebarbative and thuggish prime minister. His mildly left-leaning direction of the "Dom" was also unpopular with a sizeable chunk of the paper's mainly conservative readership. The stress he was under must have been immense. Fortunately he had the sense to chuck the job, and eventually lived to a ripe old age.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jonathan Sarfati: Yes, Ted Frost made a comeback around 1980. I was the schoolboy champion at the time, but Ted had kept a lot of his previous strength and our game from that time was drawn. Then he disappeared from chess for about a decade, and reappeared as a real dynamo in chess organization. He was a leader in the Wellington Chess Club then later in the NZCF. He could still play a good game, and upset Russell Dive once in this period.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jonathan Sarfati: <Cibator:> I remember as a kid cheering for you to win Mastermind, given your chosen specialist subject.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Jonathan Sarfati: In the late Ted Frost's autobiographical sketch in NZ Chess, July 2007, p. 15, he tells of the dinner he and his family had with Rodney Phillips, and some of the other older players who had the same experience.

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